Students, city respond to anti-Semitic attacks

Note: This article shares a byline with Indiana Daily Student reporter Michael Auslen.

Senior Leah Myhre was asleep in her apartment above the Chabad House Jewish Student Center when a loud thud awoke her Tuesday morning.

One of four IU students living there, Myhre exited her room to find the other girls doing the same, wondering what had happened.

A rock had crashed through the window, nearly striking her roommate, Maggie Williams, as she sat writing a paper. The palm-sized rock hit the wall across the room, leaving a hole in the dry wall.

“It was really terrifying,” Myhre said. “It’s not something you expect is going to happen. But when we saw the rock, we all knew what had just happened because of what happened last week to the building as well as Hillel.”

Five anti-Semitic attacks in Bloomington since Nov. 23 have caught IU students and city residents off guard.

“It’s not an understatement to say our reaction is outrage,” Bloomington Mayor Mark Kruzan said. “It’s both sad and disturbing how one distinct individual can do such disturbing things to an entire community.”

The criminal acts of the past week included rocks thrown through windows at Jewish organizations and through a display case at the Robert A. and Sandra B. Borns Jewish Studies Program office, as well as vandalism of Hebrew texts from the Herman B Wells Library.

In the 24 hours since the attack, Myhre said she and her roommates, none of whom are Jewish, have been wary of going near windows and moving around outside the building.

“It’s scary,” she said. “Someone could really get injured and without any warning.”

Myhre said not only is she surprised that the vandalism happened to her apartment, but that it occurred at IU at all.

“It’s hard to believe that this happened on this campus, that it happened in Bloomington,” she said. “I really hope they find the culprit so something like this doesn’t happen again.”

Read the rest of this story at the Indiana Daily Student.